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Sunday, August 18, 2013
Cowboys first-team defense plays well

By Calvin Watkins

GLENDALE, Ariz. -- While the Dallas Cowboys' first-team offense didn't score in Saturday's loss to the Arizona Cardinals, the first-team defense did its part.

It forced a three-and-out on the first drive, but a turnover, a muffed punt by Dwayne Harris, forced the defense to defend just 22 yards and it gave up a field goal. The second possession, a long drive, ended when Carson Palmer threw an incomplete pass on fourth down to finish the first quarter. Defensive end Jerome Long provided the pressure.

The final time the first-team defense was on the field, it gave up a first down, an 11-yard pass, but forced the Cardinals to punt.

"It's certainly a positive when you get that at the end of the drive," coach Jason Garrett said of holding the Cardinals to a field goal. "Force them to kick field goals. But we are going to go back and look at it as trying to get stops earlier in the drive, you know, get them off the field and go from there."

During practice, the Cowboys prepared for the deep passes the Cardinals threw in their first preseason contest. For the game, the Cowboys allowed 365 yards to the Cardinals.

"We're still trying to be consistent," cornerback Brandon Carr said. "Each and every play, you gotta bring that attitude where the ball is coming your way. Guys are still learning the ins and outs of this defense of where everybody is supposed to be."